Makarios Children’s Hospital never turns away a sick child, irrespective of whether it is registered with the general health scheme or not or whether it is entitled to free medical care or not, its director Andreas Neophytou said on Thursday.
He was speaking to Radio Active a day after a mother complained to the media that her three year old daughter had been refused admission, despite having 40 C fever, because she was not registered.
The incident prompted the Cyprus Medical Association and the Association of Paediatricians to query what procedures were in place, given that Makarios Children’s Hospital is the only one on the island with a specialised intensive care unit for infants and children.
The child was later taken back to the hospital and admitted for treatment.
Neophytou said that doctors were dedicated to treating sick children and would never deprive a child of the right to medical treatment.
Commenting on yesterday’s incident, he said that there was a procedure in place on the arrival of children – irrespective of whether they are to be admitted under the old or new system.
This requires the children to go through reception so that a medical file can be opened. He said that the mother of the three year old infant had decided to leave the hospital because she did not want to wait the half hour required for this procedure.
She later spoke with her private paediatrician who advised her to return to the hospital which she did and the correct procedure was followed, he said. The child underwent tests, was given intravenous treatment and antibiotics and remains at the hospital, he added.
The hospital is open from 8 am to 8 pm for all cases, he added and urged parents not to visit the accident and emergency unit of Nicosia Hospital for a referral but to go directly to Makarios Hospital.
Earlier on Thursday, the Cyprus Medical Association and the Association of Paediatricians sent a letter to the state health authorities on the issue saying that there has been unnecessary delay and inconvenience for the family because it was not registered with a personal GHS doctor.